Daniel J. Kneeland
1941 – 2023
Daniel J. Kneeland, 81, passed away at home on May 9, 2023. He was born In Springfield on May 17, 1941, to the late Francis and Doris (Goodspeed) Kneeland. Dan graduated from Springfield Trade High School before enlisting in the United States Army. He was trained as an infantryman and served in combat in the Vietnam War and was extremely patriotic and proud of his service and country. He made lifelong friends during those years that he remained in contact with people from all over the country. After his honorable discharge from the Army, Dan worked for the telephone company as a lineman. He was then honored to be appointed to the Springfield Fire Department in 1970. He retired in 2001 as a Lieutenant after 31 years of brave and honorable service, proudly working in the city of Springfield in what has become known as the busiest decade, the 1970’s. Dan was very proud of being a self-made man, crediting his success to hard work and, more importantly, to his many dear friends in his life from childhood and beyond. He started his work journey as a boy with newspaper routes and then in the tobacco fields as a teen. He found he had a natural talent for carpentry, so he developed and mastered his craft to eventually become the owner/operator of D.J. Kneeland Construction. He was a true “master carpenter”. He was amazingly clever and there was nothing he could not build, fix, or remodel. He was a true Jack-of-All trades. Dan was a passionate lover of animals. He loved his dogs like no other and spoiled them rotten. They went everywhere with him. All he needed to do was say “truck”, and they knew they were going for a ride. He fed his chipmunks (he named them all “chippy”) and they even ate peanuts right out of his hand. Dan loved “tinkering” and “puttering around”. He loved to busy himself with projects and was fiercely independent. Family and friends were of the utmost importance to him, and he especially loved parties and holiday gatherings with his children. He was always the life of the party. He loved his friends and always made new ones wherever he went. He adored his pals from “The Old Gang” and his firefighter buddies that he enjoyed breakfasts with, and so many more. Dan was extremely proud to be the East Longmeadow Veterans’ Graves Officer, and a life member of both the American Legion Post 293, and the Springfield VFW. Dan is survived by his daughter Christine Lupo and her husband Michael of East Longmeadow, his daughter Lisa Arpino and her husband Matthew of Shrewsbury, son Michael Kneeland of East Longmeadow, brother William Kneeland and his wife Nancy of Minnesota, and nieces Kathy and Karin Kneeland. He will be greatly missed by his longtime companion, Barbara Fenney. Nothing brought him more joy than his grandchildren Casey, Nicole, Daniel, Lauren, Serena, Alexandra, Cameron, J.J. and Collin. Visitation for Dan will be on Monday May 22, 2023, from 4pm to 7pm at Sampsons Chapels of the Acres 21 Tinkham Rd. Springfield MA 01129. Funeral service and burial will be private for the family. Memorial donations may be made to The Humane Society and Massachusetts Eye and Ear Infirmary.
Published by The Republican from May 17 to May 18, 2023.